November 7, 2013


[Posted below is one of my old articles, not updated today for its originality, written on March 17, 2010 covering: Sino-Indian economic growths, their competition and security concerns, the  flagrant lawlessness  in the ‘once upon a time peaceful’ country of Nepal, the February 7, 2010 broad daylight Muslim businessman Jamim Shah murder, Lashkar-e-Toiba Terrorist Kathmandu Cell, Indo-Nepal broader feud and of-course the Buddha birthplace controversy as well.  I have posted this article  without any change except for few words in it as the Indo-Nepal relations remain precariously the same or in other words there persists Indian heavy handedness, much more in recent years. While writing this article, we had a hope in mind that Nepalese leaders would bring out a constitution for the country but unfortunately now, more than three years later, they are holding another election again this November 19. And not surprisingly, RAW, Research and Analysis Wing - an Indian Spy Agency operatives are reported to have  met with some of the Nepali political leaders, just few weeks ahead of the elections ! Some nationalists Nepalese people lament Nepal being Bhutanized and then Sikkimized ultimately. It sounds not that true so to speak but the persistent southern neighbourly heavy handedness may be counterproductive in the long haul. The data are also those written, before China’s emerging as the world’s second largest economy. The original title of the article was ‘Under Indo-China Big-Brotherly  Bulwark Nepal Anticipates Brighter Era Ahead’. - The Blogger ]

By  B. K.Rana

General Background:
Nepal’s two giant neighbours - China and India, making significant economic development in recent years, offer  hope for peace and prosperity in the region. It  is an opportunity for Nepal also to rebuild herself after a grisly violence and destruction that lasted over a decade and took nearly 16,000 lives in the country. There should therefore be no delay utilizing this opportunity to harness hydro-power and for tourism development in the country. With tourism and hydro-power development, can Nepal come out of its state of privation and lack of necessities. Nepal is now required to restore lasting peace and political stability. The much hyped new Nepal’s constitution should be promulgated on May the 28th this year. Arising out of the dust of near total destruction; Nepal must pursue a balanced approach towards both of its neighbours.

Unprecedented Economic Growth:

Right now China’s unprecedented economic growth has been an amazing spectacle to watch. ‘While pre-1978 China growth rate stood 6 percent with some painful ups and downs the post-1978 China had real growth of more than 9 percent. In several peak years, the economy grew more than 13 percent’ – Hu and Khan write in ‘Why Is China Growing So Fast?’ Mao Zedung’s country China today credits Deng Xioping for its ‘exploding’ economic growth and the current system of governance well functioning in contrast to some others that faltered. ‘If such economic growths were not achieved China will disintegrate certainly’– leading economists point out.

‘China is the greatest economic growth zone in history. Already the world’s third-largest economy behind the United States and Japan, China now accounts for 7.5% of the world’s total economic activity. It’s on track to pass Japan no later than 2010, and may pass the United States by 2020. The country’s economy has increased by a cumulative 371.3% in the last 40 years, an annual average of 9.3%” - outlines Kieth Fit-Zerald, the Chief Investment Strategists at Money Morning in Baltimore, USA.

What is also predicted is that by ‘2040 the Chinese economy will reach $123 trillion; nearly three times the economic output of the entire globe in 2000’ - writes Robert Fogel for Foreign Policy. China thus will have a dashing presence in the world arena.

Driving expansionary fiscal and monetary policies, financial market recovery, capital inflows and building-up depleted inventory, the IMF says, three Asian countries China, India and Indonesia are making an ‘intensifying rebound’ after the global financial crisis of 2008. The World Bank projects Indian economy to grow 7.6 percent for 2010 and will surge to 8 percent in 2011. Not far behind the 9 percent rate it predicts for China for each of those years. This is a huge growth so far. The current Indian government will have a smooth run until the next election, experts agree.

Apparently emerging from abjection, defalcation and persistent differences among Diaspora India, which currently houses 1.15 billions people, is also projected to house 1.53 billion people surmounting China in 2030. By then in contrast China will have 1.43 billions people at its peak. The world’s largest democracy with nuclear power and robust military force, India now displays a demanding figure in the world stage. Therefore, both China and India’s role for a better world is crucial and understandable.

China and The Dalai Lama Factor:

Except for some human rights issues raised occasionally, China apparently has, until today, no bilateral tensions, particularly with its southern neighbours. India’s northward encroachment had ‘pushed its borderline to the McMahon Line in 1953 and; unable to reach political accommodation on disputed territory along the 3,225-kilometer-long Himalayan border, China attacked India on October 20, 1962’ - reports Global Security. China’s unrelenting headache started when it forced the Dalai Lama out of Lhasha in 1959.

The Dalai Lama runs government from Dharmashala in India. China presses Nepal to show reluctance in welcoming him and arrest Tibetans who flee their country crossing Nepalese border. The Dalai Lama gets invited to attend a Buddhist ceremony in Bhubaneshowr of Orissa in India where media people ask him whether he knew the Buddha being born in Orissa. The Dalai Lama hesitates, can’t find straight answer that the Buddha was born in Nepal’s Lumbini.

Religious Backlashes in India:

Along the corridors of its history, India has witnessed uncountable socio-political upheavals, assassinations, murders and the likes.  Mostly she has witnessed religious backlashes. The gruesome assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984 by her two Sikh bodyguards to avenge the military attack on the Golden Temple, the holiest shrine of the Sikhs, rocked the world.

After the assassination, her son Rajiv Gandhi, became the country’s prime minister whom also, in turn,  the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam – LTTE assassinated on 21 May 1991. But the Shri Lankan government shot dead Vellupillai Prabhakaran, the LTTE Chief,  on the shores of Nandikadal and ultimately crushed the Tigers last year. The Indian Congress Party, which Rajiv widow Sonia Gandhi heads now, won the general elections in 2004. Mrs. Gandhi offered Man Mohan Singh, the Cambridge trained Wrenbury economist, to become the prime minister of the country.

The Aayoddhya Babari Masque demolition  on December 6, 1992 caused hundreds of deaths across India and catapulted Bharatiya Janata Party - BJP- to power in New Delhi. It is a party that favours particular religious sect and also prompts sometime antagonism around. Apparently, the BJP is waning down because its cadres have been found inciting religious hatred in a secular country – analysts say.

Lashkar-e-Toiba Cell in Kathmandu ?

The terrorist attack on the Indian Parliament on December 13, 2001  almost caused war between the two South Asian nuclear powers. And followed on November 26, 2008 the Mumbai Taj Hotel shoot out, which took 173 lives and is the latest on the list. The unresolved Kashmiri issue always puts India into hot water. Pakistan wants a tripartite dialogue including United Nations which India flatly rejects. The issue remains unresolved always.

An Indian Airlines Flight 814 Airbus A 300 en route from Tribhuvan International Airport Kathmandu, Nepal to Indira Gandhi International Airport Delhi, India was hijacked on 24 December 1999. The  Indians blamed Pakistan for such an abominable act and suspected Nepal also assisting those five Pakistani hijackers. India suspects Nepal providing support to Afghan and Pakistani  nationals establish their businesses in Kathmandu and mushroom Madrashas and mosques around the country.

Besides Indian suspicions, American security experts also believe that a Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorist cell functions in Kathmandu also. In a 'kind of lawless' country like Nepal, terrorists have easy accesses reaching out where they wanted to.  The ‘once upon a time peaceful’ city of Kathmandu displayed its flagrant lawlessness on February 7, 2010 with a broad daylight murder of a Muslim businessman Jamim Shah in one of its secured areas. The spokesman of Nepalese government, the information minister,  blamed Indian spy agency for the murder which India rejected outright . The Nepalese foreign ministry later issued a statement saying there was no Indian hand on the murder. The government of Nepal seemed uncoordinated and faltered as well. Also the government spokesman seemed to have claimed so on the backdrop of slain Mirza Dil Shad Beg, another Muslim leader and a seating member of then parliament, shot dead on  June 27, 1998 in the same manner. The Mirza Dil Shad Beg case is viewed  also as the result of underground mafia infighting.

Unresolved Broader Issues:

The Indo- Nepal broader issues remain unresolved. However, India believes 98 percent of the border disputes between the two neighbours had been resolved already. Nepal thinks India encroaches while India says Nepal revives border feud. “India even seems to be relocating Buddha birth place from Nepalese Lumbini to India’s forged Lumbini” – the Buddha birthplace activists blame.

“Nepal’s lawmakers have demanded a revision in the completed survey, saying problems persisted in at least 15 districts in southern Nepal, adjoining India’s Tarai plains” – writes The Times of India, a major daily from India. In such an unpleasant situation how would Nepal benefit from Indo-China relationship ?


What has transpired is that Nepal needs pursuing a balanced foreign policy with its neighbours. It should not allow any terrorist group, if there are any,  to function within its territory. It must guarantee security to its citizens. It  has to be a country of law and order. It should promulgate the constitution on the date that has been scheduled – that is May the 28th this year. Then an elected government should come up and function for peace, prosperity and well being of its people.

Cambridge, Massachusetts,
United States of America
March 17, 2010